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A Long Way Up

"Lands End to John O'Groats on a few bikes."

A little over 6 months ago Bournemouth Taekwon-Do Instructor Daniel Lammin decided to take on the challenge of cycling the 1,000 miles from Lands End to John O'Groats along with 4 other instructors from P.U.M.A. (Professional Unification of Martial Arts). None of the group were experienced cyclists and they didn't know exactly what laid ahead (asides from a lot of pedalling). Even after training hard for the last 6 months they were still not really sure exactly what to expect from 12 long days in the saddle, so how was it?

5 men, 5 bikes, 1 support car, 1,006 miles in 12 days, 63 and ½ hours in the saddle, 1 puncture and the chance to eat as much as they could without the risk of putting on any weight. Over the 12 days the group experienced plenty of pain, legs, necks, saddle sores, niggling injuries, long climbs, headwinds, close encounters with other road users, comedy falls, a sports massage and a dose of “man flu” in a number of cases but these were far outweighed by the highs. Reaching the tops of the numerous large climbs, the stunning views, the long descents, getting to see so much of the country up close in a way the vast majority of people never will and of course the massive sense of achievement when they finally reached their goal.

Daniel said “It was a fantastic experience which none of us will ever forget. The atmosphere within the group was brilliant and played a major part in keeping us all going when things got tough (which they regularly did). Hopefully the money that we have raised will go to help a lot of people far less fortunate than ourselves.”

As an organisation P.U.M.A. tries to emphasise that martial arts are about far more than just kicking and punching. They can be a great tool for self improvement and the organisation actively encourages its’ members to try and help to build a better society. In keeping with this ethos the group undertook this challenge in order to raise money for 3 charities very close to the hearts of P.U.M.A. and her members. The Friends of Valence School (a special school for children with Cerebral Palsy and similar conditions), Pilgrim Bandits (who help service personnel who’ve lost limbs whilst in active service) and finally P.U.M.A.s’ very own Ghana Charity which is helping build a school in Ghana which will offer children and adults the chance to gain some formal education as well as training in martial arts. Thanks to the generosity of his family, friends and work colleagues Daniel has raised over £2,000 and the group as a whole have raised well over £10,000 through the ride and a charity ball held earlier this year.

If are you would like donation towards any of the above causes or are interested in training Taekwon-Do then please contact email Daniel at danny.tkd4@yahoo.co.uk or visit www.puma-uk for more information.